Water Wars? High tech farming, genetic engineering could derail what seems inevitable

| | January 9, 2017

More than a billion people around the world have no reasonable access to fresh water.

...just 0.5% of the Earth’s water is accessible and, of this, more than two thirds is used in agriculture.

Plant scientists around the world are busy identifying genes that enable plant growth in arid, dry conditions…

Once the keys to drought tolerance are identified, they can be introduced in crops through genetic engineering…

A key factor for drought-tolerance in plants is the plant hormone abscisic acid (ABA), which increases plants’ water efficiency in droughts. But ABA also...reduces plant growth in the longer term, and as a result crop yields decrease.

But plants didn’t always have this trade-off: modern crops have lost a key gene that enabled early land plants like mosses to tolerate extreme dehydration...

To engineer crops that can be grown with minimum irrigation and that will eventually help relieve water scarcity, we’ll have to reintroduce the dehydration tolerance systems...

Genetic engineering remains controversial even though extensive scientific studies report GE crops available in the markets are safe for consumption….But the fact is...GE crops have too much potential to ignore.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: High-tech agriculture can prevent oncoming global water wars

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